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Tips to Planning Your Dream Day

  1. Know Your Budget!
  2. This seems to be the number one point on every bridal consultant's mind and made visible on every planning website.

    Note to self: The average American wedding costs $20,400. That's not including the engagement ring or honeymoon.

    Here are a few specific tips to keeping your budget in check:

    • Nailing down your guest list EARLY is key to sticking to your budget. The average American guest list consists of 150-200 people. A good rule of thumb: If you have not had dinner with a person in the last year they do not 'need' to be at your wedding.

    • The average cost for the ceremony site is $13,000. Most churches offer wedding services free of charge to members. However, donations are accepted and customary. This should be your first expense. It is absolutely insane how fast places will be booked ahead of time. Whether it's a castle, garden, church or museum you better book fast!

    • The reception site should be your next big booking adventure. There are places that offer an all-in-one package which can include catering, drinks and decorations. However, most higher end locations only offer the space and then it's your responsibility to fill in your own vendors.

  3. Do Not Plan on Planning, Plan NOW!

  4. Wedding coordinators are a great resource in planning a wedding. No matter how small you think your wedding is going to be, stress is inevitable. There are various packages available to suit every bride's needs. However, if a coordinator is not in the budget, at least acquire a good planner. Planners are effective for keeping documents together, providing timelines and throwing in some helpful advice to keep brides at ease during the stressful time.

  5. The Dress!

  6. It's never too early to start looking for the dress. Although most budget planners will quote 10% of your wedding budget will/should be spent on attire, the dress SHOULD NOT be something to skimp out on. If you find 'the dress' and it is over your budget cut in other places. Even though the dress will only be worn once, you will forever have pictures. You will always remember what you looked like, what his face looked like and how you felt in your wedding dress. Just imagine being able to pass down an heirloom wedding gown that was originally worn by yourself to your daughter and granddaughter. Good quality dresses will pass the test of time and their look will be classic.

  7. Do Not Be Afraid to Ask for Help!

  8. Even if you are smart and decide to enable the assistance of a wedding coordinator, this time can still be stressful. Lean on the shoulders of your bridesmaids and family members to help you get through this time. Do not forget to set aside time for you and your fiance. If you feel overwhelmed step back from the wedding and go on a date with your future husband.

  9. Remember to Have FUN!

  10. This should be a celebration of you and your fiance joining lives as one. Once the planning is done and the day has finally arrived be sure to take it all in, enjoy the moment and let everything fall into place. There is only so much you can control. More than likely, something will not go exactly how you wanted it to, but that's okay. What matters is that you are getting married to the person you love. Do not lose sight of the meaning of marriage in the hustle and bustle of the big day. A wedding last a few hours, a marriage lasts a lifetime.

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